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    Posted October 1, 2013 by
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Shutdown over: What next?

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    DOD Workers Left Wondering


    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     George Nikolaou is spending his first full day at home after getting a furlough notice yesterday after waiting for the notification he knew was coming. Nikolaou has worked for the DOD for five years, and he’s also an Army Reservist. What worries him most is being able to provide for his family.

    Nikolaou’s wife, Michelle, had a lot to say about how the shutdown is affecting the family’s pocketbook. “When the furlough was over in July, we got caught up,” she said. “We can cover utilities from what we have in the bank, but come November, and if the furlough isn’t over, I don’t know what we’re going to do.”

    The couple spent some time pondering what they’d like to say to Congress. The message is direct: “I’d seriously like to take my kids to Washington, get them with a dinner plate in front of Congress and say, ‘Here are their plates. Feed my kids!” said Michelle.

    Despite the financial pinch, the Nikolaous are already getting creative to save money. Just last week, Michelle had some extra money, so she stocked up on necessities. “What I do is if I see toilet paper on sale and I have 20 extra dollars, I buy three times extra in case if I don’t have the money to get it next week,” she said. The family keeps a tight budget and all their meals are based off of what’s on sale that week.
    - zdan, CNN iReport producer

    I have been a DOD employee with the Department of the Army since 2008. I have never been through something like this. I have a wife in college and two children who are home schooled. How am I putting food on the table with finally just getting back to where i was pre-sequestration. Im taking odd jobs and making next to nothing.So where is the solidarity of the great United States of America stand together make the compromises and get the budget passed because my landlord is not going to work with our rent and I will be dammed if I become a homeless vet with a family on the street.

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